Below are the abstracts for Session 9 of the STEM Conference 2017
Session 9.1: A Decade of CABS: Reflections on the first 10 years of the Careers After Biological Sciences programme
Dr Chris Willmott, University of Leicester
Since 2007, the Careers After Biological Science (CABS) programme has involved alumni in describing their current role and offer advice to undergraduates who may be considering moving into a similar field. This presentation will offer practical advice for colleagues thinking about establishing a similar programme for their discipline and/or institution. These will include: methods for contacting alumni; organisation of careers seminars; capturing of appropriate data from the events; and subsequent dissemination of the advice to both local and wider audiences.
Session 9.2: Empowering Students in STEM Outreach: A Team Leader Pilot Initiative
Dr Kimberley Hill, Ms Linda Davis-Sinclair, The University of Northampton
The University of Northampton has long provided STEM inreach and outreach opportunities for community groups, schools, FE and HE institutions. In addition to National STEM Ambassador recognition, the University coordinates its own STEM Champions programme, ensuring STEM activities are championed across the University. This, combined with an inter-disciplinary STEM Steering Group, provides staff and students with a dedicated programme of STEM training and events. This year, an innovative student Team Leader scheme was introduced to provide further support and leadership to STEM programme delivery. This paper will showcase the positive outcomes of empowering students as partners within these STEM initiatives.
Session 9.3: From Satisfaction To Inspiration: Using a Lego Robot Olympiad to Engage Programmers in Collaborative Problem Solving
Dr Michal Scott, Falmouth University and Dr Mark Zarb, Robert Gordon University
Employers in the software development industry want graduates to have interpersonal and problem solving skills. To ensure the development of such skills, they must be embedded in the curriculum as early as possible. However, many students fail to engage with their peers and in self-regulated practice early in their course. An explicit scaffold is needed to motivate such engagement. This session proposes that an ice-breaker using Lego robots resolves this challenge. Insights from trials at Falmouth University and Robert Gordon University (N≈100) show greater peer interaction and self-regulated practice over the first four weeks of 2016-17 compared to 2015-16.
Session 9.5: UWE BoxED: Empowering students for the ‘real world’
Dr Debbie Lewis, Miss Katherine Bourne, University of the West of England
University of the West of England, Bristol has been developing a schools outreach and widening participation initiative called BoxED (‘EDucation in a Box’). The ethos of BoxED is to develop school-based activities based on university’s research and teaching.
The aim of this presentation to demonstrate how this has become a highly effective tool to empower our students to gain the necessary skills needed for the ‘real world’ upon graduation. We will showcase the many ways in which we have been able to involve students in the project and the positive impact this has had on our students’ success.
Session 9.6: Engaging learners in a new STEM discipline using a MOOC
Dr Angela Davies, Mr Kieran O'Malley, Miss Frances Hooley, The University of Manchester
In 2015/16 we developed a MOOC “Clinical Bioinformatics: Unlocking Genomics in Healthcare” delivered on the FutureLearn platform, to raise awareness of this important new profession and its contribution to improving healthcare. This MOOC is now implemented as part of a flipped-teaching strategy to support clinical scientist trainees studying masters courses. This session will provide an insight into the MOOC and will give attendees some experience of content creation to enable social constructivist learning. Following this session attendees will understand how MOOCs can be used to support students in their chosen subject and develop a social community driven approach to learning.
Session 9.7: Prepare to enjoy: handouts students really read
Dr Chris Trayner, University of Leeds
A technique is described which allows lab books to be marked immediately after each week's lab without overloading the marker. It allows far faster feedback than the typical practice of marking at the end of term. This also frees up the marker in May/June to concentrate properly on exams. The technique works with large student numbers; it has been used with over a hundred. It marks with adequate accuracy for courses where the lab books count no more than 50% of the module mark, and could be extended for larger percentages.
Session 9.8: Progressive methods for enhancing intercultural competence and employability for geography and disaster management students
Dr Yung-Fang Chen, Dr Matthew Blackett, Coventry University
We would like to share our experience in enhancing students’ intercultural experience, employability and digital learning skills, with a focused fieldtrip and voluntary based placement to Taiwan. We will demonstrate how we utilise a holistic applied approach of teaching and learning to help students to link their academic studies with the real world practice. We will show how we link the elements of assessment methods, field trips, works experience and inter-culture differences during the presentation. We would also like to share the impact of the module to our students.